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4/8/15: This morning, Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE: RDS.A) announced plans to purchase rival BG Group Plc. (OTCMKTS ADR: BRGYY) for 47 billion pounds ($70.2 billion). This is the largest energy deal in at least a decade. Near-zero interest rates and uncertain economic horizons are pushing companies to grow through acquisitions rather than through organic efforts. The Shell deal will help the company close the gap on global market leader ExxonMobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM), and it creates the world’s largest independent producer of liquefied natural gas.